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5/23/2016: NC Launches Click It or Ticket Campaign to Encourage Vehicle Passenger Safety and Save Lives

NC Launches Click It or Ticket Campaign to Encourage Vehicle Passenger Safety and Save Lives

Posted 5/23/2016 11:31:50 AM

Raleigh – North Carolina today kicked off the 23rd year of the state’s Click It or Ticket education and enforcement program to remind motorists that wearing a seat belt can save your life. The campaign aims to increase driver seat belt usage rates and reduce fatalities across North Carolina and has yielded significant results over the years. In fact, between 2010 – 2014, an average of 545 lives were saved per year due to the use of seat belts in passenger vehicles. “We are always working to improve the safety of North Carolina motorists and wearing your seat belt is one of the easiest ways to stay safe on the road,” said N.C. Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson. “The Click It or Ticket campaign reminds both drivers and passengers that seat belts save lives.” Governor Pat McCrory has stressed the importance of using seat belts, and cited his recent accident in California after the Super Bowl as a good example. He was a passenger in the back seat of a California Highway Patrol car that was rear-ended. The governor credited wearing his seat belt as the reason he was not seriously injured. Secretary Tennyson joined Highway Patrol Commander Colonel Bill Grey, Governor’s Highway Safety Program Director Don Nail and nearly two hundred law enforcement officers to kickoff the campaign. Robert Hassell, president of N.C. Association of Chiefs of Police, and trauma surgeon Dr. Miren Schinco also spoke to the audience about the importance of seat belt safety. "As the summer travel season begins, we want to remind passengers that it is the law to wear your seat belt in every seat,” said Don Nail, director of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. “If you fail to buckle up, at the very least you could receive fines of up to $179 but ultimately you could lose your life if you are involved in a crash.” During the annual national Click It or Ticket enforcement campaign, which begins today, Monday, May 23, and continues through Monday, June 5, motorists will see an increased presence of law enforcement officers day and night across the state to keep those who drive our highways safe. This enforcement period comes ahead of the Memorial Day holiday, one of the busiest travel weekends of the year. "As Memorial Day approaches, traffic will increase throughout North Carolina. We want to make sure everyone has a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend," said Colonel Grey. "Please fasten your seat belts, obey the speed limit and don’t drink and drive. The choices you make can be difference between life and death.” In 2015, 415 people were killed and an additional 436 others were seriously injured who were not using seat belts in motor vehicle crashes in North Carolina. During that same year, 41.8 percent of passenger vehicle fatalities were unrestrained. North Carolina law requires all passengers in a vehicle to be properly restrained. Nevertheless, many backseat passengers believe they do not need to use a seat belt. In fact, a recent U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) report confirmed that 22 percent of backseat passengers do not buckle up. The most recent available data revealed that in 2014, 48 percent of backseat passengers in North Carolina that were killed were unrestrained. The DOT estimates that people not wearing a seat belt in either the front or back seat of a vehicle are 30 times more likely to be ejected during a crash. Another sobering statistic estimates that in fatal crashes, more than three out of four people who are ejected die from their injuries.  To complement the enforcement efforts, the N.C. Department of Transportation and GHSP produced several public service announcements to stress the importance of wearing a seat belt in Every seat, Every time. The advertisements are running on both traditional and non-traditional media through the end of May. Governor Pat McCrory has also proclaimed May as Seat Belt Safety Awareness Month. To help you and your loved ones stay safe this Memorial Day holiday, we recommend the following safety tips to drivers and passengers as they travel: Buckle Up. Every Seat. Every Time; Don’t drink and drive. Make sure you have a sober designated driver; Obey the posted speed limit; Keep a safe following distance; Turn on your headlights in the rain; and Put away all distractions including cell phones - it can wait. For more information regarding Click It or Ticket activities, contact Jonathan Bandy at (919) 814-3657 or visit the GHSP website. ***NCDOT***
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3/24/2016: N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program Launches New Enforcement Blitz Against Speeding

N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program Launches New Enforcement Blitz Against Speeding

Posted 3/24/2016 11:07:28 AM

Raleigh, NC – The N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program (GHSP) is launching its annual speed enforcement blitz from March 24 – April 3 under the tagline: “Obey the Sign or Pay the Fine.” The intensified enforcement effort against speeding drivers underscores the severity of the problem across our state’s roads. Officers will step up enforcement of posted speed limits throughout North Carolina and stop and ticket anyone caught speeding. “Speeding translates to death on our roadways. It greatly reduces a driver’s ability to steer safely around another vehicle, a hazardous object, or an unexpected curve,” said Don Nail, director of the GHSP. “We want to help our state and local law enforcement get out their message Obey the Sign or Pay the Fine to reduce fatalities.” In 2015, speeding was a contributing factor in 23 percent of all fatal crashes in North Carolina and 322 lives were lost in such crashes. During last year’s Obey the Sign or Pay the Fine campaign there were 23 fatalities, including five speed-related deaths. "North Carolina law enforcement remains committed to keeping our highway and roads safe,” said Public Safety Secretary Frank L. Perry. “The N.C. State Highway Patrol does not intend to change its tactics when it comes to enforcing the speed limit. Our troopers still have reasonable discretion when it comes to enforcing our traffic laws. Earlier reports that we would begin ticketing drivers going one or two miles over the speed limit were based on a misinterpretation of the initiative. Troopers and local law enforcement officers will continue to enforce the speed limit." Fully 86 percent of all speeding-related traffic fatalities occur on local roads – where the posted speed limits were 55 miles per hour or under. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a crash on a road with a speed limit of 65 mph or greater is more than twice as likely to result in a fatality than a crash on a road with a speed limit of 45 or 50 mph and nearly five times as likely as a crash on a road with a speed limit of 40 mph or below. About 14 percent of the country’s speeding-related fatalities occur on interstate highways each year. ***NCDOT***
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12/7/2015: Annual Tree of Life Ceremony Honors 1,277 Lives Lost on NC Highways in 2014

Annual Tree of Life Ceremony Honors 1,277 Lives Lost on NC Highways in 2014

Posted 12/7/2015 12:54:09 PM

RALEIGH – The annual “Tree of Life” illuminated Friday evening on the grounds of the State Capitol in memory of the 1,277 lives lost on North Carolina highways last year. The Governor’s Highway Safety Program, Mothers Against Drunk Driving and law enforcement agencies from across the state joined families and friends of the victims to honor the lives lost and bring awareness to the dangers of drunken driving. “The annual Tree of Life ceremony is our time to honor the victims that lost their lives on North Carolina roads and to use the ceremony as an opportunity to help prevent similar tragedies from occurring,” said GHSP Director Don Nail. “Our vision is zero fatalities in North Carolina, and we want to remind everyone who is about to travel for the holidays to stay safe, buckle up and don’t drive impaired.”   The “Tree of Life” was lit with 371 red lights memorializing the victims of alcohol-related crashes, 905 white lights commemorating the lives lost in all other vehicle crashes and one blue light recognizing the law enforcement officer who lost his life in a traffic crash in 2014. Following the tree lighting, MADD held a candlelight vigil in memory of those who died as the result of an impaired driver. “I am happy to see that we have added a new color light to the tree this year to honor the law enforcement officer that we unfortunately lost due to a traffic crash,” said Nail. “Law enforcement officers put themselves in harm’s way to make sure people are safe on our roads, and this one blue light is to remind people to help protect those who protect us.”  North Carolina MADD director, LaRonda Scott, joined Nail and Nic. So far in 2015, North Carolina has seen 1,219 fatalities on its roadways, which is a slight increase from the 1,186 deaths that occurred during the same time period in 2014. Alcohol-related deaths have decreased a bit, with 336 year-to-date fatalities compared to 357 at the same time last year. The “Tree of Life” will remain on display at the State Capitol through Jan. 6, 2016. ***NCDOT***
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4/12/2012: “No Need 2 Speed” Nets Nearly 13,500 Speeders

“No Need 2 Speed” Nets Nearly 13,500 Speeders

Posted 4/12/2012 10:53:03 AM

RALEIGH — The Governor’s Highway Safety Program announced today that state and local law enforcement officers cited 13,435 motorists for speeding during the “No Need 2 Speed” Campaign, which ran April 2-8. A total of 39,150 traffic and criminal citations were issued statewide. “State and local law enforcement agencies made a tremendous effort to make our highways safer and to remind motorists to obey the speed limit during this campaign,” said Becky Wallace, director of GHSP. Officers also issued 2,832 safety belt and 426 child passenger safety violations and 1,003 drug charges. In addition, they apprehended 819 fugitives from justice and recovered 51 stolen vehicles. For county-by-county citation totals or more information about “No Need 2 Speed”, visit the Governor's Highway Safety Program website.  ***NCDOT***  
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4/4/2012: There is “No Need 2 Speed” While Traveling

There is “No Need 2 Speed” While Traveling

Posted 4/4/2012 10:54:16 AM

RALEIGH – Speeding is one of the top three causes of crashes on North Carolina’s highways. In an effort to reduce speeds and make our highways safer, the N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program along with the state and local law enforcement kicked off the “No Need 2 Speed” campaign on Monday to cite speeders for not obeying speed limits. N.C. SHP along with local police departments and sheriff offices across the state have stepped up patrols on North Carolina’s roads. The stepped up patrols will continue through Sunday, April 8. While you are behind the wheel, remember these tips to get you to your destination safely: Obey the speed limit. In 2011, speeding was a contributing factor in about 33 percent of crashes in North Carolina; those crashes resulted in 428 fatalities and 39,416 injuries; Pay attention. The latest research shows that you are 23 times more likely to crash your vehicle if you text while driving. Other distractions in your vehicle may include eating and drinking, grooming, using a navigation system or adjusting your stereo;  Plan ahead before you leave home so you know where you are going and how long it will take you to get there.  You can visit the travel page on the NCDOT website at http://ncdot.gov/travel/ to learn about road construction, crashes, weather conditions or other incidents that may affect your travel time. Also, you can call 511, North Carolina’s toll-free travel information line, for real-time alerts and updates.    Dangerous driving can be reported to local law enforcement by dialing 911 from anywhere in the state. For more information on “No Need 2 Speed”, go to the Governor's Highway Safety Program website. ***NCDOT***
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